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Hundreds of voices were now raised full and loud in the familiar
freedom songs and the little slip of a girl was the mover and
shaker of them all. She never gave a verbal command but she converted that crowd into a well disciplined chorus, commanding them through the gestures of a master-pantominist: a roll of the eye, a pout of the lips, a smile, a shrug o fthe shoulders, an exaggerated pat of the foot.

Suddenly she raised both hands aloft, and the crowd now hundreds deep, fell instantly silent. She cocked her head to the side, rolled her eyes toward her colleagues and with a half-secretive but all-knowing smile, began a new song.

The words I heard were: "This little light of mine, it is going to shine; oh, it is going to shine."

A roar of identifying applause came from the crowd and a thousand voices joined in the chorus of "This little light of mine. . . ." The verses were improvised by volunteer soloists taking the initiative in rounds, and all came in on the chorus.


At this point a police car bearing the Chief, himself, edged into the crowd who opened a passageway. The young people who constituted the inner-ring

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of the crowd pointed their fingers like so many searchlights at the police as they fairly shouted their verses which called for
freedom and the clean-out of segregation.

Someone ad libbed a verse that said "we want the killers of Evers" and the little girl in the center of the ring gracefully arched her thin arm and pointing finger in the direction of Capital street. Capital street crosses Farish at the top of the rise.

It demarcates the division between the two worlds, it separates
the "colored" part of town from the "white." There at the crest of the knoll where Farish street climbs up to Capital was the phalanx of the blue steel-helmeted police with riot-guns at the ready.

The rhythmic pace of "This little light of mine" beat faster and firmer. Now hundreds of arching arms pointed to the police at the top of the incline cue.

A voice in the crowd said: "What are we waiting for?"

And the little slip of a girl answered back: "Well, all right, then!" She made a half turn and stepped toward the top of the hill, with a kind of dance step that was neither walking nor running.  
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